Peter Principle  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.


The Peter Principle is a proposition that states that the members of an organization in which promotion is based on achievement, success, and merit will eventually be promoted beyond their level of ability. The principle is commonly phrased, "Employees tend to rise to their level of incompetence." In more formal parlance, the effect could be stated as: employees tend to be given increasing responsibility and authority until they cannot continue to work competently. It was formulated by Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull in their 1969 book The Peter Principle, a humorous treatise, which also introduced the "salutary science of hierarchiology".

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Peter Principle" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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